A friend and I have been going a little stir crazy. Between virtual school, KSA’s announcement last week that Saudi would continue virtual school until the end of the year, very little alone time to just be and think, we finally got out! Where was our destination? Travel restrictions keep us in the country. Cafes or restaurants aren’t possible as they are take-out only, and have been for almost a month. To feel like you are in a different place from the norm, where you don’t need to get on a plane, train or bus, you need ambience. Some place you don’t need to take a Covid test to enter, or quarantine after you’ve been, we opted for a fantastic store called Desert Designs in Al Khobar.
Sure you will need your mask, your temp checked as you enter, and the Tawakkalna App with the green bar showing; this is the new normal. But once inside, we were offered fresh bread drizzled with Saudi made honey. Such a nice treat and way to start our “girls few hours out”. Feeling at home and happy to be at the store, we then perused the many decorations, furnished corners and overall “traveler’s” ambience you get from the place. But our real goal, the real destination, at least for my friend and I, was on the second floor.
The art gallery of regional Saudi artists takes up the second floor, as well as a small cafe that usually serves coffee, tea and small finger foods. There is currently a show of watercolor paintings also by another Saudi artist. Today we were exploring what offerings the young Saudi artist Skna Hassan had on display. The owner was more than happy to show us the many images and paintings available for purchase in different sizes. As Skna Hassan is a digital/mixed media artist, many of her art prints are available within days. We left feeling closer to finding the image(s) that would grace our walls.
Enjoy the photos of what the store interior looks like!